Kentucky Republican candidates running for the state legislature are calling for lawmaker pension plans to be replaced with a 401(k) system, a move they say could save the state millions in contributions every year.
According to the Lexington Herald Leader
, the Republicans plan to make pension reform the first piece of legislation they introduce, saying it would take effect in 2013. But the measure, the newspaper said, would not affect current lawmakers. They would still be covered by the old system.
The pension debate is heating up in the campaign because the state is facing a shortfall in its pension system that some estimates say could be as much as $30 billion, impacting the retirement plans of lawmakers, teachers, and other state and local government workers.
Kelly Whitaker, a Democrat running in Western Kentucky, complained that the plan offered by the Republicans is “nothing more than a cynical attempt to replace the gold-plated pension plan for current legislators with a silver-plated version for new legislators.”
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